Behind every publication, there's a story. Here's ours.
As we were building our core product, Silverbird (a business account for international trade), we conducted interviews with more than 200 merchants from all over the globe. These were merchants from Nigeria, Ghana, Kenya, South Africa, Vietnman, India, Ukraine, Russia, Philippines, China, and Turkey.
At some point during these interviews, we were struck by realization: the problems in global trade go beyond just banking.
Think about it. The Internet provided you with immediate access to customers anywhere in the world. And yet, the global infrastructure — including banking, which we're trying to solve — is just not there yet.
Merchants are still perplexed by logistics, compliance, getting loans and working capital, regulations (different in each country!), streamlining shipping, marketing to customers, incorporating overseas, opening foreign bank accounts, choosing new products, finding distributors for these products, optimizing taxes, buidling global supply chains, managing remote teams, dealing with customs, and, of course, navigating the affects of COVID-19 on global trade.
As we researched online for answers to some of the questions poised by our customers (like, "How do you open a bank account in Estonia without a residency there?", or "How has Brexit affected merchants from the EU?", or even "How to minimize taxes when shipping overseas?"), we were shocked to see that there's no one-stop destination for merchants that would solve these bottlenecks.
More than that: there was no publication flexible enough to constantly keep its pulse on the market, reacting to the newest legislations and innovations, as all international traders know: it's the little things that matter. The devil is in the details.
This is when we knew: if we were to build a world-class company servicing international merchants across the world, we'd have to go where our customers are.
We'd have to meet them half-way, and create a publication that would help them solve — if not all, then most — of their problems selling globally.
We assembled world-class experts in the world of international trade: writers from Nigeria, Hong Kong, Singapore, Dubai, London, – and other trade capitals of the globe – to create practical, insightful articles that would save merchants time, allowing them to focus on what they do best: selling.
Together with an ex-BBC producer and movie director, we launched a fortnightly show — Trading Places — that would go beyond just practical advice and give merchants insight into how the global economy functions, interviewing merchants from all walks of life that operate in the thick of it.
As we work, we remind ourselves that if just 1 entrepreneur working hard to ship products from A to B becomes more successful by consuming our content, we know we're doing something right.
After all, selling globally can be difficult. But there's always a silver lining.
— Sergey Faldin, Chief Editor.
Producer / Podcast Director
Sonny Sanjay Vadgama
Trading Places Host
Head of Design
Development and IT support